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Astronomers photograph the fingerprint of God

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
March 21st, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The European team behind the Planck Cosmology Probe, has released the first all-sky map of the universe's cosmic microwave background radiation. The picture, which is being called a "baby picture" of the universe, along with its attendant data, is causing scientists to slightly revise their understandings of the universe.

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The map reveals the afterglow from the big bang, and reveals the energy is not evenly distributed, but rather clumpy. Scientists say the map shows the distribution of matter and energy in the universe when it was just 370,000 years old, which is amazingly young for a universe that is almost 14 billion years old.

Previous maps of the cosmic background radiation have been produced starting in the 1990's. The new map is edited to remove pollution from close, or otherwise bright objects, providing a clean map of the background radiation.

Early maps revealed the universe was comprised of 4.5 percent ordinary matter, the stuff we, and all we can see is made of, 22.7 percent dark matter, material we cannot see but can observe its effects, and 72.8 percent dark energy. Dark energy remains a mystery. Astronomers know what it does, but not what it is.

It is understood that matter and energy are interchangeable.

The new map, which is much more precise, has scientists fine-tuning their calculations. The universe, according to scientists, is now comprised of 4.9 percent ordinary matter, 26.8 percent dark matter and 68.3 percent dark energy which remains mysterious.

In light of the new data, scientists have now fine-tuned their understanding of the age of the universe to about 13.82 billion years.

There is nothing in the data that substantially revises current understandings, however models can now be tweaked to provide even more accurate understandings.

The data explains why the universe takes the form and structure that it does now. The distribution of galaxies, the clumping of matter, and the appearance of everything is well explained by the data.

Although few who are not physicists or astronomers might not appreciate the subtle understandings of these findings this much will suffice for understanding: the map is nothing less than a picture of the fingerprint of God.

The image reveals why the universe is why it is and why it can sustain life. Amazingly, if the image above were any different, we wouldn't be here to see it.

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